How to Create a Weather Plan for your Wedding - Unpredictable Weather

‘Weather’ we like it or not (excuse the pun, I had to!), the weather in Colorado is massively unpredictable.

How many times this winter already have we been told to expect an inch of snow, and were met with 8 inches and sunshine in the afternoon?

Every season in Colorado comes with it’s fair share of crazy weather. Thunderstorms, flurries, hail, high winds, overcast clouds, and hot, bright sun.

Today we are talking about how to create a weather plan for your wedding.

The last thing you want is to have a massive thunderstorm derail your outdoor ceremony, when the only alternative is to say your vows in a crowded garage. Yikes!

Creating a Weather Plan and Weather Contingency for your Outdoor Wedding

1. Look into rentals

If you are planning an outdoor wedding with a patio-style cocktail hour, and perhaps even a completely al-fresco dining reception, consider renting either a tent (you can keep the sides open), or small tents (like you see at festivals) where guests can gather.

Not only can they be used to give people a break from the sun, but if it does rain, you’ve got a backup that still feels very much ‘outside’.

For relief from the sun, you can also look into beautiful fabric installations and pergolas.

For winter weddings, you can actually rent commercial space heaters. They look great and guests will appreciate the warmth!

2. Don’t be afraid of the weather

In Colorado, it’s very likely that you will experience rain, sun, or wind on your wedding day - especially if you are getting married in the mountains.

Instead of stressing about it, embrace it!

You can rent or buy umbrellas, ponchos, and/or fleece blankets to have on hand in case they are needed.

An indoor ceremony doesn’t have to be a reality if you are willing to delay your ceremony through a weather event (and if catering and your vendors are able to get in line for it…this is one great reason to hire a wedding planner!).

If an indoor ceremony does become the only option (hey Colorado, I’m talking to you on those rain-all-day Saturdays!), your wedding planner can make sure that your indoor option is gorgeous and romantic too. Planning ahead for this doesn’t jinx it, and knowing that it’s not a terrible option can help put your mind at ease.

3. Stop watching the weather apps!

It’s not uncommon for couples to start watching the 10 day forecast and panic when it says ‘90% chance of rain’.

I’ve seen a forecast on Friday say that rain is coming, and have the weather at the wedding on Saturday be positively gorgeous.

Talk about unneeded stress!

Put away the weather apps. We cannot control the weather, and whatever happens will become part of your beautiful wedding day story.

Example? Imagine watching out the window with your bridesmaids as a hail storm blows through just moments before your first look. You’ll be laughing, drinking champagne, and waiting for it to clear up - what a great story.

Imagine you are half-way through your vows when the clouds start to drop sprinkles…adding to the romance of this already special moment.

These are memories you will actually cherish! I haven’t met a couple yet that had to change their wedding day a bit to accommodate the weather, who told me that the day had been ‘ruined’ by it.

If anything, working with the weather adds to the unique and beautiful nature of every Colorado wedding!

4. Plan for sun

Most couples worry so much about rain, hail, and thunder that they forget to plan for one of the toughest weather conditions of all: SUN!

A sun-drenched wedding ceremony in July results in sweat, pink cheeks, dehydration, and yes…sunburns.

Everybody turns pink in photos and people can’t wait to get back into the air conditioning.

To plan for sun, make sure your wedding party always has access to water.

Buy sunscreen and pass it out - even to guests, who may be grateful when they find out just how sunny it is here in Colorado!

Parasols and paper fans are a thoughtful gesture that will make the whole experience better for everybody.

Sunny Wedding photo by  Dawn Sparks Photography

Sunny Wedding photo by Dawn Sparks Photography

5. Be Safe and Be Flexible

Lastly, as frustrating as it may feel to have to move your gorgeous decor into a barn for the ceremony, safety is key.

Thunderstorms in Colorado are dangerous. They can put a stop to gondola and ski lift operations, make it unsafe for guests to play lawn games, and become a safety hazard during a mountain-top ceremony.

Make sure guests have a safe place to go, and don’t push it if the weather does turn up to be full of electricity. Chat with your wedding venue coordinator about how they handle weather problems!

Be flexible. It’s possible that you can flip things around a bit; have your cocktail hour indoors and then do your ceremony before dinner. Have your romantic portraits taken at a different time of the day, so you can sit out a storm with your guests. Trust your photographer to work with you if the rain just won’t let up - a good photographer can make magic indoors, too!

Are you planning a Colorado wedding? If you are unsure of how to plan for weather, or deal with it, let’s chat. I plan weddings and love to help make sure that my couples have the best day ever!

Colorado wedding vendors featured in this post:

Dawn Sparks Photography